What struck me about this latest storm that rocked the contestants was not the rain so much as the wind. “This is what I envisioned hell to be like,” says Tony, and for once, I believe him. I don’t just love watching these poor people suffer because I am a terrible human being. Well, that’s most of it, but I also do like to gauge the various reactions to the conditions and see who has the power and inner strength to push through the pain. For instance, let’s compare and contrast two such reactions from the Brawn tribe. Here’s Woo’s take on the situation: “This is what Survivor is all about, baby!” (Okay, dial down the enthusiasm about 18 percent, mister.) And here’s Lindsey’s: “This is the most ridiculous situation I’ve ever put myself in, and I just wish I hadn’t.” Okay, granted, Lindsey’s toenail was in the process of sliding off her foot at that point, but still, opportunities like this allow us to see what people are really made of.
I also want to be clear about one thing: Through my many on-location Survivor visits, I’ve been out in some of these super gnarly conditions. It’s easy to sit on the couch, watch it, and say “toughen up”…so that’s exactly what I’m going to do! Just kidding. It is a hell of a lot harder than it looks. That said, it’s also a great test to see who is able to block all of that out and keep their eyes focused firmly on the prize, and at this point Lindsey’s eyes appear firmly focused on searching out any sort of neon Exit sign.
Things are no easier over on the Beauty tribe, where Jefra Bland (who has quite possibly the best Survivor last name since Parvati Shallow) has to deal not only with incessant rain, but flies! Flies, I tell you! They are sooooooo totes annoying! And in perhaps the most shocking development of the season, the women of the Beauty tribe apparently do not enjoy doing manual labor. Who woulda thunk it? They sit around and watch while the dudes work on waterproofing their shelter as best as possible.
Remember two paragraphs back when I wrote about how bad weather is a good test to see who can block it out and say focused? Well, LJ just passed that test with flying colors, which is even more impressive when you consider that members of the Beauty tribe may not have passed many tests in their lifetimes. (Paging the Zingbot 3000!) LJ uses the inclement conditions to his advantage, and while the others are huddled up trying to stay warm, he ventures to where Boobs McGee was when they first arrived at camp, figuring an immunity idol may be hidden there. He figures correctly, finding the idol tied to a rock on the ocean floor. We’re only on episode three and already all three idols have been found. Clearly after last season’s almost castwide boycott of any idol clue acceptance whatsoever, the producers decided to make up for lost time by handing out plenty of clues to plenty of easily discovered idols this time around. It’s no secret why, as producers love for idols to be in play. Now their wish has been granted.
And if your wish is to see Tasha have water repeatedly tossed in her face, than your wish has been granted! That’s because she is insisting the Brains tribe practice for the upcoming challenge by throwing water from one cup to another. It’s a futile exercise, but does lead to J’Tia’s proclamation that “I like the hand technique,” which is totally something I would make fun of Probst for saying while doing play-by-play on a challenge. Whatever the “hand technique” is, it does not appear to be particularly effective, but the true test will come at the immunity challenge itself.
NEXT: A puzzling situation